Topic: About MIlestones
Group: SE Idaho TeaM
Cora(Bill): I am Cora. Let us pray. Michael, our brother and Father, we stand in Your presence; and like this group listens for the urgent messages which may be coming over their telephones, we would have ears attuned to Your guidance that leads us into all truth, that takes us past the fences of prejudice, of small mindedness, of selfishness into the pastures where Your sheep are well fed. Tonight it is our will to do Your will, oh great Universal Father, Eternal Son, and Infinite Spirit. So, may our perception be keen and our resolve complete. Amen.
Cora: Indeed, I am Cora, and it is my night to speak, partly in honor of Martie, but also because it has been granted that we personal teachers have a go at it and assist our good brothers Daniel, Minearisa Melchizedek, our brother Aaron and other visiting teachers. Since this is a birthday celebration, in part, I wish to talk with you about milestones.
As you know, milestones mark distances. They also are used to give you feedback on how accurate your estimations of distance are. You can assess your odometer accuracy by taking note of milestones. Birthdays have been set arbitrarily as milestones of a year in time. And, as you know, the meaning of those milestones in years can be the subject of a vast range of human emotions, including sorrow, anxiety, humor, pleasure, and satisfaction. It is not the designated number of the milestone which induces those emotional reactions, except in cases of significant milestones such as twenty five, a quarter century, or forty, the top of the hill. Usually the meaning of milestones has to do with how a person feels about their progress in life so far.
You have mused and discussed some facts regarding male/female differences in the interpretation of life's events. As you have noted, these vary somewhat over time with cultural pressures and changes. For men, and increasingly for women, the milestones of birthdays are measurements of achievement in the material realm: the beginning, maturation, or completion of a career; the progress of your children; the number of grandchildren or possibly great grandchildren that you have accumulated. There are many other kinds of examples: your salary level, the size of your home, the number of cars you own, whether or not your wardrobe reflects the latest fashions appropriate for your age, the number of degrees that you have earned or been awarded as in Ph. D.s, etc. I could go on and on. How many of you have seen a card that congratulates a person on the achievement of spiritual growth? There are such cards, but they are in a distinct minority. As your text tells you, God looks upon people and divides them into two categories: those who are willing to do His will; and those who are not. So I am suggesting tonight that the best and most accurate celebration of milestones has to do with your spiritual journey, which is not highly correlated with your material journey. In fact, to be more accurate, I should say it is not correlated with your material journey, except in one small area: having enough of the basic physical necessities to have the time to contemplate spiritual matters, if they so choose.
Tonight you have all congratulated Martie on her birthday and your pleasure in celebrating each others milestones is pleasant to observe. I suggest that even as you know Martie as your friend, as your colleague in this Teaching Mission group, as a mother of two children, and a wife of her husband, Buck, as a woman who has had several careers, yet all of these things that we know about her are not the fullness of her measure. Indeed, what you have most in common with her is your spiritual journey, the goal that you have set for yourselves, the same goal that we have set for ourselves, to traverse the ascension levels and to reach the Corps of Finality. I congratulate you, Martie, on your sensitive, broad minded, caring nature. I congratulate you on your willingness to progress, despite handicaps and difficulties. I celebrate this milestone for you in that we have achieved a certain degree of communication. I laud you in your efforts to do the will of God as you understand it. I suggest to you that you be as gentle with yourself as you are in understanding other people. Beware of the dissatisfaction of minimizing your own progress. Continue to look for the bright side of the interpretation of events, which is good advice for all of you, of course. I am not suggesting that you become a foolish optimist, but a confident realist. Let that inner up-swelling of your spiritual center displace the tendency to worry. Again, advice that pertains to you all, for worry and anxiety are the thieves of inner peace. They are not spiritually constructive.
Finally, I look forward to our journey together, you and I; and while your mortal estate is here with these, your friends, I look forward to my association with all of you. You are a mature group relative to the Teaching Mission as a whole. You have had many years of experience, years that have been filled with earnest effort and spiritual growth, intellectual expansion, and social outspreading. You have been a source of guidance and inspiration to many people beyond the circle of this small group tonight.
Milestones are measures of progress, as we have been discussing. As you know more and more your spiritual progress you will be less and less concerned about your material status. Jesus repeatedly taught to lay up treasures in heaven where moth and rust do not corrupt nor thieves break in and steal. He said, "What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses his own soul?" These words suggest that the most valuable thing in life, the pearl of great price, is the discovery of your true nature as sons and daughter and the resulting growth in grace and in the fruits of the Spirit which follow that experience.
I wish for you, Martie, another year filled with successful progress on the uncharted waters of the future as you steer your ship toward our Paradise destination. To the rest of you...the same wish, that you all will be successful as you pilot your individual ships in this little fleet of boats moving across the waters of God's time and space experience toward His home, His destination. I have finished my little homily and I would be glad to engage in discussion, comments, or questions. The floor I now share with you.
Martie: Cora, I don't have any questions, I think. But I certainly appreciate your coming and talking to me. It always give me another little boost of faith that I am on the right track, even when I sometimes wonder. Thank you so much!
Cora: You are most welcome, my dear. I know that you wonder, but you still persist. Indeed, the sharks of doubt that circle your ship are not going to prevail. As you move closer to your destination you will leave them behind. Yes.
Virginia: Cora, when you said our fleet of little boats I thought to myself...why couldn't we all be on one big boat so that we share the responsibility of the trip. Seems to me there could be a little more help here! (Much laughter from all the group).
Cora: Let me try to give you another mental picture that will help you. You probably know what I am going to say.
Virginia: Oh, I don't know.
Cora: You are captains of your own ships, for your responsibility rests with your free will prerogatives. But your little fleet is not defenseless. It is following a very large and strong vessel, a windjammer, full of sails, with a mighty crew and with many rescue boats on board. (More laughter goes on and on)
Ken: We use them all the time!
Cora: Michael is the Captain of that ship and many are the angels who are his crewmen. There are also two vessels behind you. One is the Spirit of Truth and the other is your Indwelling Fragment. So you have a front and a rear protection. Does that encourage you and give you a sense of security?
Cora: Yes, it is such a life on such a planet! You Agondonters will be amazed at what this tough life that you live will mean for your future usefulness as you journey to Paradise, and after that. That is why we teachers keep telling you that we are envious of you being in the flesh where you can make all these growth enhancing decisions in such a dramatic environment of choice which most of us have never experienced. The results are truly wondrous, for you will be assigned to jobs, and you will have the knowledge of how to do them that others will not have. You should, perhaps, sometime do a study on the status and role of Agondonters in the Urantia Book. I think you would be most amazed. So don't let the rough waters take you down and throw you on the deck of your ship that you cling in terror to the guard rails. Rather, as you stand there and the waters rock you, hang on to the guard rail of your faith, and all will be well. Others?
Nebadonia, dear Mother, we thank You for Your spiritual presence in this universe, that we can always turn to You and rest our heads on Your bosom. We thank you for your ministering angels, our faithful guardians. We desire to cooperate with them as they help us in mortal estate, and to work with them more fully in our morontia estate. Bless all of these, my younger brothers and sisters, with an ever expanding faith, depth of trust, and overflowing love. Even so, Michael, in Your name I pray. Amen.